Tag: michele bachmann

Rebuilding a Mosque and Fighting Hate

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

The recent shooting in the Sikh temple in Wisconsin that left six dead, the burning of a Mosque in Joplin, MO and the smearing of Huma Adedin, longtime aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were all fueled by the Islamaphobia of crazed white supremacists and fear mongering from our elected representatives and high profile government officials with outrageous imaginary claims of links to terrorists. It is the job of those of us on the Internet and in the traditional MSM to denounce the hate and help right the wrongs that we can. This is how it’s done:

Glenn Greenwald: Combating Islamophobic violence

Helping a burned-to-the-ground Missouri mosque quickly re-build would make a powerful and constructive statement

Shortly after the Islamic Society of Joplin opened a mosque in 2007 in Joplin, a small town in Southwest Missouri, the sign in front was set on fire, an act determined to be arson. On the 4th of July of this year, someone who is undoubtedly a deeply patriotic person was filmed by a surveillance camera throwing a flaming object onto the roof of the mosque in an attempt to burn it down, causing some fire damage (see the video below); despite a $15,000 reward offered by the FBI for information leading to the arrest of those responsible and a clear shot of the attacker’s face, nobody has come forward to identify him.

On Monday of this week – the day after the Sikh temple shooting in Wisconsin – that same Joplin mosque burned to the ground, completely destroyed by a fire that began in the middle of the night. So powerful was the fire that “only remnants indicated a building had been there, including some stone pillars that were still standing and a few pieces of charred plywood loosely held up by a frame.” Although the cause has not yet been determined, investigators – for obvious reasons – have labeled the fire “suspicious” and are searching for signs of arson. As obviously ugly as these incidents are, they offer an opportunity to make an important statement.

In response to these events, a teenaged member of that mosque, Joplin high school student Laela Zaidi, began using social media such as Reddit to talk about what happened and to discuss the importance of the mosque to her community (it’s not only the town’s only mosque, but the only one within a 50-mile radius, leaving Joplin’s Muslim families with no place to gather for Ramadan); the results of Zaidi’s online efforts (including her defense of her community) are surprisingly moving. In Salon on Monday, Joplin native Susan Campbell described the abundant humanitarianism in the town when it was devastated by a horrendous tornado last year, and called upon residents to tap into those same sentiments now by turning the July 4 attacker into authorities. Local-area churches and synagogues have quickly united in a show of support for the mosque.

Most significantly, a little-publicized online campaign to raise the $250,000 needed to rebuild the mosque has produced extremely quick and impressive results. Yesterday, when Al Jazeera’s The Stream wrote about the then-hours-old campaign, it had already raised 1/5 of the money needed ($51,000). When the campaign was first brought to my attention last night and I tweeted a link to it, it had already raised $75,000. As of this morning, barely 24 hours after the campaign began, just over half of the money needed ($126,000) has been raised. Having this Southwest Missouri mosque be able to quickly raise the money needed to re-build – all from small donations of people on the Internet disgusted by these attacks – would be a powerful statement indeed, and I really encourage everyone who can do so to donate.

As of today (Friday), over $262,000 has been raised, exceeding the goal for rebuilding the Mosque. Don’t stop. Donate here

In Glenn’s article, he points out the ugly trend of hate crimes directed at the Muslim community that have reached epidemic levels and the complicity of some of our elected officials and the mainstream media:

This happens because overt expression of Islamophobia is, far and away, the most accepted form of bigotry in mainstream American precincts. Now and then, certain expressions of it are so extreme as to embarrass mainstream circles – Peter King’s Congressional investigation into The Enemy Within or the Michele Bachmann attacks on Hillary Clinton’s Muslim aide – and are thus roundly condemend, but more often than not, they are perfectly acceptable.

The Washington Post‘s Dana Milbank today suddenly realized that Andrew McCarthy – the former federal prosecutor and oft-quoted “legal expert” now writing obsessive anti-Muslim screeds for National Review – is a hatemongering crackpot with exactly the right last name. The NYPD is exposed for indiscriminately targeting innocent Muslims with mass surveillance and infiltration in their communities, and almost every mainstream state and city politician – led by Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer and the Democratic mayoral front-runner Christine Quinn – cheers. When demands were made that an Islamic community center be moved away from Ground Zero in Manhattan – as though Muslims generally were to blame for the 9/11 attack – even some prominent liberal politicians supported that demand.

And a hearty thanks to Stephen Colbert for taking them to the woodshed with his humor:

The Week in Editorial Cartoons, Part I – Union Busting in Wisconsin

Crossposted at Daily Kos and The Stars Hollow Gazette

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)

The Week in Editorial Cartoons – Comedy Central Presents… Michele Bachmann

Crossposted at Daily Kos and The Stars Hollow Gazette

Clay Bennett

Clay Bennett, Comics.com, see the large number of reader comments in the Chattanooga Times Free Press

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Trying to watch her taped response is worse than annoying, and the woman makes up her own facts as she goes, which has come to define her.

In short, if this is the best that the Tea Pot party has to offer, then there’s really nothing to see or hear that has not been offered time and again.  I really don’t care for parrots.

Michele Bachmann is also defined by her presumptive beliefs, obtained God only knows where.


The First Amendment Right To Talk Crazy

And the corollary Constitutional right to say extremely crazy, untrue, provocative things to large gatherings of possibly armed people has been getting a workout, too.

Look at this:

A few thousand people gathered at Freedom Plaza in Washington today for the first of two Tea Party rallies in the nation’s capital today organized to protest government spending and taxation.

Clutching angry signs and occasionally breaking out into chants of “USA! USA!,” the protesters listened to a series of fiery speeches attacking the Obama administration for what they cast as irresponsible spending and far left wing policies.

Rep. Michele Bachmann said the “gangster government” has instituted a “takeover of one private industry after another,” again making her questionable claim that “the federal government owns or controls 51 percent of the private economy.”

She said the Obama administration is “perfectly content with presiding over a decline in our economy,” adding: “I’d say it’s time for these little piggies to go home, and come November that’s where they’re headed.”

That, of course, is Constitutionally protected, insane speech.  The “gangster government” was elected by a majority vote.  And its policies, for better or worse, were what it was apparently elected to do.  Evidently, democracy and majority rule are now “gangster government.”  But strangely, the previous administration’s kidnapping foreign nationals off of streets, secretly putting them on airplanes, flying them to secret, black hole prisons, and torturing them for months is not “gangster government.” That’s necessary “security.”  The illegal renditions must not have been “gangster government” solely because there was no demand for ransom.  But I digress.

Michele Bachmann’s (RWNJ-Minn) utterances are so far from the truth and so obviously unhinged that Bill Clinton has criticized them:

“They are not gangsters,” Mr. Clinton said in an interview with the New York Times. “They were elected. They are not doing anything they were not elected to do.”

The former president, who was in his first term in office when Timothy McVeigh bombed an Oklahoma City federal building, drew parallels between the anti-government rhetoric being used now and what was being said then.

But back then it was the camouflage wearing militia fringe that was making the dangerous, provocative claims.  Nobody in their right mind listened to their rantings.  They were shunned.  And they got no publicity.   And now, well now it’s an elected Congressperson and evidently the Tea Parties and Faux TV that trumpet this insanity and the rest of the Traditional MediaTM feels compelled further to disseminate the ravings.

The First Amendment Right to crazy talk is getting a total, stretching workout.  Let’s hope this exercise of madness doesn’t lead inexorably to yet another “imminent breach of the peace.”


simulposted at The Dream Antilles and dailyKos

“Trying to get the President KILLED” Dan Savage NAILS it all, from “the Birchers to the Birthers”

Crossposted at Daily Kos

This might be the most thorough assesment of the Republican party, the media, The Religious Right, Michele Bachmann, Glenn Beck, you name it, Dan Savage nails it. In an interview with Keith Olbermann, Dan Savage lays the truth down, hashes it up for all to see and then serves it with a bag of chips and a cup of STFU for the GOP.

Dan Savage:     I really do think the Michelle Bachmanns of the world and the Glenn Becks of the world are actively and, consciously or subconsciously, trying to get, I’m just gonna say it, trying to get the President killed.

    Full transcript and my own take on the issues below the fold.

Overnight Caption Contest